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State Hospital Information

  • Sub-topics under this page ….

The following links offer general overviews of services offered at various State Hospitals in Pennsylvania.  Most pages include information about the location, counties served, services offered, and a history of the State Hospital. All the pages unless otherwise noted were found on the PA Dept. of Public Welfare website.

The following links are from various sources and in some cases include pictures along with an overview of the history of the hospital.

  • Asylum Projects
    • Includes  information about State Hospitals across the USA and Internationally.  it’s an interesting site to visit since reading the various histories of the different Hospitals can help to see the progress that has been made in the mental health system.
  • JennerLynn.com
  • JennerLynn.com is my personal website, where I have been placing information I have found while researching the history of Warren State Hospital which is located in North Warren, PA.  The site is a work in progress, and because of personal issues, updates are rather sporadic, but I have done my best to cite my findings along with the location of my sources so others can verify my information.
  • Kirkbridebuildings.com
    • Kirkbride Buildings focuses on discussion about buildings made using Dr. Thomas S. Kirkbride’s building plan.  The forum also offers discussion of other topics relating to state hospitals in general, it is among my favorite sites to visit because of the amount of information that gets shared in the forums.
  • Thomas Industries
    • Includes photos and some history for Danville State Hospital and Harrisburg State Hospital with possibility of other facilities to be added over time.
  • If anyone knows of any similar sites from other sources, feel free to submit them to me for possible inclusion here.

    235 Responses

    1. i was there 82-84. iwas in fallsington cottage. i remember my best friend there danny and a staff AL. he was a good guy. and my girlfriend january. was anyone there around the same time?

    2. Any patients of ESSH 94-95???

    3. What happen to brian mcnally from the child of darkness documentary i would love to no if u have any info,thank u☆

      • An im sorry i didnt see the options for the notifications so u may email or whatevers easiest thanks💞

      • Unfortunately Brian passed away

      • This is Michael Mixerr. This news review will be an update about Brian McAnally. This news review will be about the death of Brian Mcanally.

        On the date of July 28, 2016, Brian McAnally passed away in the group home he was living in. At the time of death, Brian was found dead in his dorm at the group home he was living in at the time. It was due to conditions regarding his health that he passed away. His mania had taken a turn for the worst despite getting emotional healing through therapy. Brian attended meetings with a behavior therapist and counselor on a regular basis. Despite all that, Brian was thriving in his group home better than he did at Eastern State School. Brian McAnally was 53. He left several family members behind whom he hadn’t seen for years.

        In 1983 (after Brian McAnally turned 18), he was moved to a brand new group home which was located 4 blocks away from his fathers home in Kensington, Pennsylvania near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania after living in Eastern State School for 4 years. Brian was thriving and doing pretty well in his group home better than he did at Eastern State School. He wasn’t as anxious or aggressive despite having been diagnosed with mania and schizophrenia earlier in his life. Later on, he was diagnosed with mental retardation.

    4. I was at ESSH from January 91-April 91. I was lucky I wasn’t there very long. I was on unit 1. Some people I remember and would love to find out what happened to are Kathy March, Helen, Laurie Bucco, Leyla, and Mandy. Years ago I found Ms. Julie the teacher. I stayed in touch with Kathy for awhile and reconnected briefly at Wernersville. I wish there had been a class action lawsuit against that place. Nothing awful really happened to me but I’ve seen and heard other kid’s stories of what when on there. I’m glad it’s no longer open. I’d actually love to talk to anyone who has been there. My email is charabisgirl@gmail.com.

    5. Hey Shannon, this is Angel Black. I remember you. I used to go out with the Puerto Rican girl Jesse. How have you been?

    6. Somebody in the Youtube comment section said that Brian McAnally is deceased since mid 2016. You are aware Brian was featured in the Children Of Darkness documentary.
      Best of luck.

    7. Looking for my uncle Brian McAnally he would be about 53 years old. Any help. His mother’s name was Lois Marie McAnally and his father James Mcanally

      • Kimberly, my name is enrique. Is this person the same Brian that was on the documentary “children of darkness”??? Alot of people are asking about him. Please respond……rickmxx@hotmail.com
        Thank you

      • Hi

        Was just watching Children Of Darkness. And when Brians Dad said he was worried about Brians care in his later life I wanted to jump into the TV and say ” Ill take him”.My heart went out to Brian. Did you ever find out what became of Brian and where he is now?


      • Kimberly, I tracked your uncle down, I have spoken to his neighbor, he did indeed pass away in July 2016. He developed a very high fever and his caretakers could not bring it down. It was a very brief illness and he passed in his apartment. I was told Brian was a very sweet man and always in a great mood. If you get in touch with me, I will get you in touch with his landlord so maybe you can find out some additional details. I am so sorry to bring you this bad news. hair.scott@gmail.com

    8. merry christmas and a happy new year

    9. To Mandy Josh and I were family his loss hit A LOT of ppl hard.

    10. I was in eastern state hospital in trevose pa, I was in cottage 5 for six months I have been sexualy abused by a staff member at night,an one night I grabbed him,an nearly killing him, I was sent to the JFU . Main hospital no one would listen to me about it,my dad tried to get me out but it took him two years of fighting courts to get me home,mean while I have had 120 incidents of fighting with kids and with staff, I remember correctly the three staff I always had problems with was Keith sibear an T I am all fucked up today, I have been in the military service since I have been in the shit hole there in 1990-1993 I was out, I have no way to get past this hell I have from there,since then me and my wife drove to where it was,they tore it down great to see that,but I still struggle with the rape of me every night, I still have nightmares

      • Hey my name is Sandra Webster I was there in the 83to84 I think I remember you do you remember a girl named Monique lambright

      • Jessie, man I can’t even or to apologize for what you went thru and what you continue to struggle with. I was there I heard the scuttlebut but I was caught with my own demons. But I get it cuz it was some to me, not there but still, you can’t ever get over that especially when it’s someone of authority that’s entrusted with your care. Josh Smith took his own life in a home visit because of similar situation back home. But you keep fighting keep pushing, cuz if you don’t that fuckhead and ppl like him wins. We were all fucked up going in it’s not right to be more fucked up coming out. Remember you ain’t do SHIT to deserve what happened so fuck that pussy and you keep fighting, don’t forget what happened just use to make you stronger. Easier said than done but you can do it and if you get tired of fighting than get up and fight some more. One more thing- THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE.

    11. Yea I remember maria, also troy nupold, Brian Puerta, Fred, I was there from 89-92

      • I was there I ran with ruby rivera

      • I was there two times. The first was in 1991 for 6 months and the 2nd was in 1994 1995 for two years. The first time was bad. Don’t remember it is was 10 and in a cottage then. The second time was a fucking devastating nightmare. I was in the hospital cause most cottage where not in use no more. I was 14 and left when I was almost 16 I’m so fucked up from it. I have to live it every day and can’t ever forget the things that happened to me. I wish to the ones that hurt me to have it right back to them to feel there pain they caused. But that wishful thinking. I’m hoping I can get some pepole together though thishe blog so I can talk and learn more about that a hit hole and get the law suit going so many of us deserve or what we where though. That place maid me go maid. What a total nightmare my name is jr or Harold. Hit me up to chat

    12. Hi there:)

      I would love to know if anyone has any information about Brian Mcinally. I’m sure his father has passed, as he was 70 years old in 1983. Brian was only 18 in 83′. I’ve watched “children of darkness” numerous times and I would truly love to no if Brian is doing well today. Please, if anyone has any information I would LOVE to hear it. Thanks!

      • I would like to know he is alright also, did you get any responses?

      • i saw your post! I my self have been looking for Brian! for many years .I think about him all the time,after seeing Children of darkness.Ijust hope he is ok!,Have you had any luck finding him?Thank you Rose.

      • I’m looking for my uncle who has the same name. Was his father’s name James Mcanally? My family is trying to track him down especially my mom Karen. His name matches and he’s be about 53 today.

      • Hy,

        I watched this documentary on YouTube and in the comment section below a man who allegedly knew Brian wrote that he did well in his life adding that he passed away on July 28, 2016 in Philadelphia, PA.

        • Hello, I am looking for a person by the name of Brian Mcanally??? This was on you tube???? Anymore info?? Please???

    13. today 50 years ago the groundbreaking for the rest of the buildings at the eastern state school and hospital happen monday march 21 1966


    15. marry christmas and happy new year

    16. you can get a copy of your records from eastern state by calling 610-313-1072 the number still works! i just tried it.

    17. Any advice on how I might obtain my aunt’s records from Warren State Hospital from her residence there in 50s-70s? She has passed but I am the closest relative. Thanks.

      • I’m going to assume it would involve a written right-to-know request but I’m not sure if the request would be sent directly to WSH or if it would go to someone else in Harrisburg. Based on the time period, you mentioned you may not get much information due to HIPPA, but try contacting the hospital directly they should be able to tell you what you need to do to get started or where to direct your request.


      • I don’t recall hearing of it before, so I’m sorry but I can’t be much help on this one. just to spitball some possibilities though I wonder if it might have been either a research facility or a facility aimed at treating adults with mental health issues

    19. their is a group about eastern state school and hospital on facebook just type in essh-pa

    20. if you watch you tube children of darkness till the very end it will say what happen to brien and the two others in children of darkness

    21. if you would like to obtain a copy of your records from essh please write to norristown state hospital medical records director 1001 sterigere street norristown pennsylvania 19401-5399 you will need your birthdate and anything else like s.s. number student# date you were their ect.

    22. if you google 3740 lincon highway bensalem pa 19020 you can se a picture of what eastern state looks like today

    23. I was at ESSH on 3 different occasions from 85-90. My last time there I was 6 months pregnant. My son is now 24. I remember Ms Geri, the hair stylist, Ms Rosa, loved her.. The only Spanish worker I remember. My stay was miserable. My only escape was my friends.
      Ella Rupert
      Melissa Mohler
      I ran away wit some boy named Ralph I think.. Lol I don’t really remember. Angel Santos n his brothers were there ( they’re triplets)
      There was a red head boy but I don’t remember his name. I guess all those psychotropic meds messed wit my memory. I remember working at canteen. Couldn’t wait til Fridays to go. I remember lifting weights n the trainer was some old perverted looking dude.. Lol
      Anyways if anyone remembers me please contact me..

    24. on jan.19 it eill be 50 years since i left eastern state after a 6 month stay i would go back to se miss garber mt social worker 25 times last time in feb. 1966 so i have not found no one on facebook who was their on jan. 19 1965 but i found a lot on f.b. from my locial high school.

    25. after brian mcanally turned 18 he was moved to brand new group home 4 blocks from his fathers home.

    26. hi i was at essh in 1988-1989..i am looking for someone by the name of cyndi..i was in ivyland..i remember miss jj n i believe her name was miss debbie..i ran away from there with 3 other people we ended up at va beach..if anyone remembers me..please feel free to contact me at..kathycounterman@yahoo.com

    27. Yeah Matt I remember you email me at acaps2005@aol.com so I can give you my personal information so we can hook up

    28. I was in ESSH from 92 to 95, age 14 to 17. I started in unit 2 and ended in New Hope Cottage. I made alot of friends of which still in touch with some of them but have tried to reach out to others or find them. My nickname is ESSH was Matt, big black kid who was very friendly but had anger issues. People I try to locate are:

      Angel Black
      Andre Gray
      Tony Geroh
      Dan Brown
      Jessica Romagano
      Natalie Klineman

      I’m still very much in touch with:

      Dawn Gerholt
      Alicia Laub

      • Hi william I was looking up essh and found this I was in jamison in 94 I remember natalie and angel I was curious if I imight know you

    29. Does anyone remember someone by the name of Brian mcanally who was there last known in 83? Forever wondering what happened to him. He was in the documentary ‘children of darkness. Please reply..He was so nice and sweet. So was his father, Jim. I hope he is doing well. Any information would be great. Thank you! 🙂

    30. i am not writing a book about eastern state school and hospital


      • Here is a link to the video that John Miller mentioned in his comment called “Children of Darkness” I’m not sure about when the video was made, but I suspect based on clothing that it was from the 70’s or 80’s, but I could be wrong. http://youtu.be/tTCSfx47R1w

    32. Does anyone remember someone by the name of Brian mcanally who was there last known in 83? Forever wondering what happened to him. He was in the documentary as well. Please reply

    33. to mike and jenn c. do youi know a way somebody can put the picture of the main building of eastern state on this site?

    34. to jenn c. and mgibbs if any body has any pictures of essh please try to sent theam to me or mike or anybody who was at essh as a student or worker . i received the picture of the main building by e- mail from the people who bought essh back in july 2010. the picture is from about 1997 i am very glad to se that many pwople s tohared the picture with a lot of other people. thank you jenn c four your site.

    35. Jenn, I just posted a few more pictures on my blog, one of them is the hallway you were talking about (rec building connecting to the canteen) in a post…
      I’m going to gather a few links and post them on my blog in the near future, your site is one of them! I appreciate your site, if it wasn’t for you I wouldn’t have run into so many ex patients! Even though my search continues for 3, its nice to know some made it and are doing well!

    36. the story that shannon howard tells us must have happen in 1988 or 1995 it was when feb. 14 fell on a sunday stoping church to tell everbody was stupid syupid stupid!!!!!!

      • I was there. We even had a memorial for him in church. However, I do not remember church being stopped to tell everyone the news, I was watching t.v. in the day room when the staff called me into the room and told me. I could be very wrong about this, this was so many years ago.

    37. Jenn & Everybody,

      It’s been a while since I last visited this blog and my own as well, a lot was going on but now I’m back….Spent the good part of 4hrs replying to some old e-mails….Some of the people on here wrote me as well, my main e-mail address is: essh.gibbs@gmail.com, I use to use mgibbs521, but that one is no longer active…

      Jenn, the new look on your site looks great! Hope all is well!

      • Gibbs, Thanks for the compliment on the look, I was going for something different in light of not having any snow to take a pic of for my winter theme.

    38. Hey Shannon I remember you. You use to hang out with a girl named , who is still thrown off. How have you been? Don’t know if you remember me. I was first on unit 4 then came back and put on unit 2 and left from new hope. Do you remember me?

    39. I’m really impressed with your writing skills as well as with the layout on your blog. Is this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself? Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it is rare to see a great blog like this one these days.

    40. does any body have any information about the new hope cottage? thank you

    41. I was in croydon,durham and new hope cottage….then when the place was about to close they shut down the cottages forst and then moved us to the main building until it closed……do you remember when that asian chick snuck in morphine pills and gave them to the dude in new hope who was about to be discharged and he od’d?? that shit was pretty messed up…he was a good friend of mine and I can’t remember his name…But I do remember Elwood Musser…and that black dude charles who was slow…and mr. vince and mrs.rosa (she was a nightmare) and a few other people….like my roommate jason menditto

      • I was in New Hope Cottage when Gary died. I left ESSH a little after that. I’m trying to remember you, but can’t seem to picture your face. I remember crazy ass Charles, hope he’s doing ok.

      • hey jesse do a search for jason now on google u will be shocked. it makes me ashamed i even dated him and that i fought with other chicks at hoffman homes for him. he turned into a real sicko. may i ask ur last name cause i was in jamison and i dated jason while at essh and as far as that girl she wasnt asian she was hispanic and she was my roomate. gary was the guys name who overdosed

        • I remember Jason. I’m jr I was away cutting my arm. The the best way to remember me sad to say it. But I’m glad to say I have not done any harm to myself and I chilled out. Do u remember me

      • That girl was my roomate. RIP GARY.

        And is this Jesse C? My ex?

      • I remember Jason. I’m jr I was away cutting my arm. The the best way to remember me sad to say it. But I’m glad to say I have not done any harm to myself and I chilled out. Do u remember me

    42. Hey Jesse I was also there when the place was about to close. The kid Gary died in the same cottage I was in. What unit or cottage were you in? Be careful with this site, there are a lot of people who have claimed to be there but were not.

    43. I was in essh for 4 years mid 90’s….I remember the place very well….I was also 1 of the last 7 to leave on the official day of closing…we were told that Tom Ridge who was governor at that time said they were closing the facility to allocate more funds for prisons.If you would like to talk with me about essh email me at toknowmusic@rocketmail.com

    44. did essh have both a antorium and the ruond room? or was the round room the antorium? i have overhead pictures of essh i can try to get one to you

    45. today it is48 years since i made my first home visit from essh i shure missed the farm! i would make 13 home visits from june 29 to jan 19 my pairents visited me 3 times from june 29 to aug 14 after jan 19 1965 i would go back to meet with miss garber 25 times you know i almost so more of her after i left wssh thean idid when i was their!

    46. thank you for your information! when i was at essh all we had was the round building and on the left front side of the main building was a workers cafateria. at this time the unit kids all eat in a cafateria on the top floor. that would stop when the top floor became a lock down floor. thean everbody would eat in what was the workers cafateria. ok the question did the outsidcaateria connect to the round builning cantine ect.?

    47. eastern state question: was the swiming pool in the same building as the round room? was the cafateria and the sodia shop/canten/trading post and the round room all part of the same builing? somebody help me!!! i am lost can any body draw a map? thank you.

      • of the things you listed, I think I was only in the round room, and the soda shop. My memory is hazy, but it seems like we went to the soda shop, and then from there we were able to walk through a connective type hallway that took us to the round room. Almost have the impression that the round room and the soda shop might have been in seperate buildings that were linked together but I won’t swear on that, like I said my memory is fuzzy. There was also an auditorium which I believe was in a seperate building from the round room. I never saw a pool, but my world was pretty small there it pretty much consisted of Unit 8, the school, the round room, and I think I was in the soda shop once or twice, and I think the auditorium twice as well. I was on some pretty heavy duty meds at that time in my life, so the idea I remember anything is quite impressive as I think back to that time. The meds I was on were things like mellaril and haldol and as my Mom and others who knew me at that time can tell you, I was like a zombie most of the time, and experienced nasty tremors as side-effects of the meds.

        • You are correct, the round room was connected by a hallway to the Canteen.
          I was in the same boat as you with the meds, I came from North Western, I remember in the beginning I couldn’t stay away, my head was always down in class, and in the morning when everybody met outside, I would be laying down on the ground sleeping! But soon after I arrived I was taken off my meds and everything was all good!

      • No, the swimming pool wasn’t in the same building. It was in the gymnasium building. The Round Building was kind of attatched to a beauty shop for the girls, where at least one day a week, Ms. Geri, from unit 1 would do hair. There was also an art room and a couple of rooms used for supplies.

        • I was there when Ms.Geri did hair. I was there about a week the first time she did my hair and that night when we had showers I washed my hair….Ms.Geri was so mad!! She told me because I was new she would give me the benefit of the doubt but not to let it happen again, when she did my hair I WAS NOT to wash it that night! I was at essh in 91ish…I was there 9 months and ended up working at the canteen eventually before I left.

    48. this saterday june30 it will be 48 years since i left home for a short stay at eastern state. thank you god that that it got better as time went by. it was not a good place when i first got their.

      • This is Shannon, i was in ESSH for 31/2 yrs. From the age of 14 til i was 16yrs, I was in Jamison cottage, up in the main building on unit 3 for the hyper girls at the time. I remember on Valentines day a male patient from unit 2 commited suicide while on a wkend home visit. He hung himsef in the home of his parents. We were in church at the time the staff was notified, they stopped the service to inform us of this happening! I didnt know him all that well but one of the girls on my unit was shall i say dating him while inpatient. My experience in ESSH was mainly intense, emotional, strict, lonely, and sadly brought more harm in my life than good. I was discharged from ESSH and sent to The Devereux Foundation where i remained until the age of 19yrs. I have to admit that being all the various agaes of patients sent to ESSH including the Forensic unit for male patients awaiting their 18th bday and to either be sent to WDC and or another facility pending their charges, mental staus, etc. Have to say i meant alot of people throughout my stay there at ESSH, a few i actually still maintain contact with and others i completely lost touch with once discharged. Some ive heard stories about that were extremely good and others that werent so good at all.

    49. they are groups about essh on facebook but they are secret and privite i could tell you who to contac on facebook to get on essh facebook but i will get in trouble if i do but if you contac me at tractorboy50@yahoo.com ican tell you.

    50. Very interesting topic , appreciate it for putting up. “I am not an Athenian or a Greek, but a citizen of the world.” by Socrates.

    51. i was lucky that i was put in a good program when i was at essh a lot of the kids were treated bad. i did did not receive one pill the whole time i was their back in 64/65 they did not beleave in pills they beleaved in talking talking and more talking and EDUCATION! i think some of the kids could have used some pills to slo0w theam down. it could have help some of the kids in the units. use kids in the cottages did not need or get medicated. we got educated.

    52. They had made me feel worse in hospital. They drugged me up with powerful antipsychotics against my will and i was very sad because it felt like they just wante me drugged and not the real me. I was about 21 and 22-24 the two time I was in state hospiotal. It was a NAZI miltary operation, not sure how many staff knew that, sure there were some who didn’t just for cover up puproses, to point them out and have them as someone to note that doesn’t affliliate or know of NAZI dealings. It was terrible, my spirit was crushed and I had lots of hope and dreams. I was there wrongly from being persecuted for being a christian, and I suffered terribly. They had kept me too long and still today (I will be 27 in august) I am dealing terrlibly with the terrible abuse that happned. Vry closed off and scared of people now. (I was very open). Those places need to get shut down, they are not healing people. That IS war. and it is terrible. People have no clue how much terror and suffering happens in those places..

      • Omg I so agree with u I was there in the late 80s what they did to me and the other kids how come I can’t find a lot of information about this place now like I just read stuff about Penn hurst.when will this stuff ever end my 17 year old daughter got put in a place in west chester not by me by the courts and as a mother I was going to take my chance and break her out for having bruses and broken hand & foot all by the staff.

    53. Hello my name is Terry. I am looking for a young woman I was there with named Theresa McCormick. She was part puerto rican part Italian. And I think she was on unit 1. We were really close! If she ever stumbles upon this… I think of you often.


    55. I was a resident at ESSH from 86-88.I loved the place.I remember Ms.Geri,Ms.Jackie,Ms.Celeste and Mr.Ed,they were my favorites..My Dr was Dr. K. and I put her through hell at first.I was on the girls unit 3 and also in the Ivy cottage..I have a son that is now 20 and I wished that ESSH was open when he started having problems cause I would have put him there.ESSH taught me alot about my mental illness and how to cope and realize that there were others like me.I’m now 39 and still in treatment for Bipolar,P.T.S.D and depression.I remember alot of the names of my old friends and would love to get back in contact with them..Let’s see Dorthy C.,Denise,Crystal S.,Nikki B,Juanita S.,Amanda,Takada H.,Anita,Cindy Z.Katina M…just to name a few..Plus I dated some boys William,Gary,Jessie and Dennis..

      • I was at Eastern State n ’88. After a brief stint on unit 8, I was transferred to unit 1. I would really like to reconnect with the people who were there also. I was invited back to speak a few times by Dr. K. It was a bittersweet experience to go back. Although I had a chance to see a lot of the people I missed, I also recieved updates on some of the girls on my old unit who didn’t fare so well.
        I checked FB, and there isn’t a group that relates to ESSH. I would be happy to start one, if there is enough interest. Being at ESSH was a unique experience, to say the least. Especially now that it’s closed, I think it would be nice to have a place for all of us who were there to have somewhere to catch up. If you’re interested, please feel free to e-mail me at dmpaprocki@att.net Please mention ESSH or Eastern State in the subject box.

      • I remember you, too, Lora. I would LOVE to catch up with you and anyone else who was at ESSH when I was there. Please feel free to e-mail me, and we can get back in touch.


    57. so it does not give no missunder standing the 2 facebook pages essh school and eastern state sch and hospital were not started by me i do plan to use theam i do not know who started theam.i was in afb group called essh pa it ended between june24 and june30 2011. i was made a member of a new group on june 30 i was only in from 8:09 to 10:17pm what happen after that is not clear i am not trying to make any kind of trouble for people who are in another group i do my work at the libary and it keeps record of every thing i do.

    58. please check out essh school on facebook. also check out the green magazine message board on green magazine site. allso some started eastern state sch and hospital on facebook.

    59. today it is 47 years since i left eastern state. jan. 19 1965. i would go back about 25 times to meet with my social worker miss garber. the lat time i would be on the essh property was fri. feb. 11 1966. i can,t believe i found 45 names on the internet since may 2010

    60. i am going to cut back or stop my research on the history of essh. i have found about 40 names. i am going to go back to useing a computer to study agriculture and asae studies. most of the people i have work with are 30 years younger thean me and it is not working out. i am not trying to hurt anyone or cause trouble but some people think i am to nossy. this has gotten to the point that i fear for my life. thank you

      • Sorry to hear about the problems you’re having with your research. I know you’ve approached me and while I know I wasn’t able to offer much, I never felt like you were being nosey or anything. My impression has been such that you seem to have been presenting things like ‘this is my project. Do you want to help?’ Which I always thought was very cool. I know ESSH is a youngster so to speak when viewed in comparison to other state hospitals with regards to length of time it had been around, which I’m sure creates some issues in itself compared to the research I’ve been doing on Warren State Hospital, which the cornerstone was laid for in 1874 and it’s pretty easy to find public information about it especially the years upto about 1920 after that it gets trickier, because stuff is either copyrighted, protected under privacy laws and regulations, or in a sense kept hidden from the public. I think what may be happening in regards to folks thinking you’re nosey, is that while it is more acceptable in our society to have a mental health diagnosis, there is still a lot of stigma there as well, and some folks may have fallen victim to stigmas and stereotypes which could cause them to possibly be reluctant to disclose anything. As someone pointed out to me, there is potential for backlash from employers if someone discloses, dispite the fact that the Americans with Diasbilities Act and Equal Opportunity Employment regulations are very clear that a person can’t be fired or treated in a discriminatory manner if they have a mental illness, there are employers who will look for excuses to fire someone or make their life miserable until the person quits because of self-disclosure. So it may not entirely be that people think you are being nosey, they could be concerned about what could happen if they disclose that they have been in a state hospital.

        I hope that you don’t giveup entirely on the project, it really is a noble project in my opinion, and with state hospitals quickly becoming a thing of the past I feel that the history of them is important to try and preserve so that future generations can better understand how people with mental illnesses have been treated and societies’ view of folks like myself.

        Researching the history of a facility can be both fascinating and frustrating but maybe taking a step back from it for a bit might help give you a fresh perspective.

    61. i would like to put togeter a real face book group of good people who were at essh i would like to write a history book on essh or do a on line history of essh. i have found a lot of history info and some pictures i got from the people who bought essh for 8.5 million. i would like to share this with other people. if somebody wants to se what i have and talk to me we can meet in the bernville libary iam looking for people who would like to help me you can reach me at tractorboy50@yahoo.com

    62. to angel l. b. yes i was at essh from june 30 64 to jan. 16 65. i was in the unit building for 7 weeks i was bullied and abused by workers and inmates. i was the first to go to croydon cottage it was good. it was like a bording school no more bullies fights or abused i was put into a high level school program. it was better thean my locial high school was croydon was good the unit was bad i have my records and a copy of the nov. 64 school newspaper if any body thinks i was not their. i was paitient#97. do you know anthony moses? i have heard from people like wendy mary jenn shawn ect.

    63. I would like to thank all of the people who have responded to this post, but it seems like there are a lot of fakes who weren’t at ESSH. For me, the time there was both rough mentally and physically. This post is not a joke, and shouldn’t be used as one.

    64. jenn how can i read this site? it has gossts on!

      • I’m not real sure what you are saying the problem is, but if you can clarify I will do my best to try to fix what ever is preventing you from reading my blog. I looked at it using both MSIE and Mozilla Firefox, and everything seems to be visible/readable.

    65. i am still going a lot of resurch on essh some of the people i used to be in contact with are no longer on facebook ect. i would like to start a new essh school web site since the the old essh-pa facebook page is history for a number of reasons =different people have different reasons as to just what realy happen to the old essh -pa fb page. i have meet 6 people who were at essh who live in my part of pa that would be from allentown to harrisberg to york. i was planing to try to have a essh reuion or get togeter . ican rent my locial park for free. on mgibbs blog their is a picture of one of my cotage mates and his name yes paul vollmer i se you! please get back to me! my e-mail is tractorboyboy50@yahoo.com. i live nw of the city of reading in berks county near route 183 and i78. trank you

    66. the only pictures i can find is after it was closed down, my grandmother lived about 3 minutes from ESSH and when she passed away in 96 my parents moved into her place, so i have been in the area most of my life. i remember when it was closed down, i also remember the construction going on the main building was demolished and Strayer buildings foundation was rebuilt about 20 feet forward from the original Lowes now stands where croydon cottage used to be, being a private contractor i am in there often and sometimes wonder how many times i used to stand in the same spot when i was a kid. while i was in ESSH 2 big things happened. 1. a kid escaped and jumped off of a water tower, and 2. a kid tried to rape the music teacher. i don’t remember too many people who were there and i don’t remember that many of the staff that was there. i was one of the ones who went home every weekend, there were two weenends in the time i was there and i remember unit 5 being shut down and we had to stay in cottages for the weekend. i remember going to the round building and shooting pool, and going to the canteen,

    67. to j. p. yes i have pictures of essh and i found some on the internet but i don,t know to put theam on the internet. i allso was in croydon cottage i eas 13/14 i was at essh in 64/65 tractorboy50@yahoo.com

    68. i was there from 87-88 i was discharged right before my 13th birthday. i was in unit 5 in the beginning then went to croydon cottage, anyone have any pictures of the place. i would love to see them


    69. Hi my name is Christine and I was never a patient in a mental institution but my dad was in Geisinger’s(Danville,PA) psych ward and this school year I might be doing a job shadow at Danville State Hospital for one of my classes( I talked to 1 lady today and she said theres a pretty good chance that I can do the job shadow but that I have to call admin tomorrow) If i do get the oppertunity to job shadow one of the employees anybody have advice on what to expect or anything else u might have? If so please let me know

      • It’s almost like stepping into a different world, where the people being cared for may be ok physically, but mentally may be at their worst when they first arrive, but as they near discharge should be improved. Some folks may want constant attention, while others may seem like they are oblivious to the idea you are there. I think the greatest thing you could offer though is respect for each person you encounter because the folks in treatment may be feeling like it’s you against them, or even resent you, because you are paid to be there and they are there because in some cases they were told they had to be there. Some will view the unit/ward as home and do everything they can to keep coming back, while others may never return. What you will face will vary so much depending on who else is working, and what kind of relationship they have with the patients. The staff truly can contribute to what kind of mood the patients will be in during each shift. I’ve seen staff who treated me with respect and dignity that to be honest many patients looked forward to seeing, but then there are some staff who it’s pretty safe to say are just there for the pay check and maybe the benefits, and come across as cold or even dictators in the eyes of the patients, thes cold dictator types tend to be the ones the patients dread, and if a problem is going to arise it is most likely to occur when the cold dictator types are working.

        You don’t need to disclose your personal life, but letting folks know you are truely interested in seeing them recover and do well in a manner that includes dignity and respect of them as individuals can go a long ways to make the atmosphere in general a little more pleasant…. well as pleasant as being in a hospital setting can be when you’re experiencing a mental health crisis, but the better the patients feel, the safer it is for everyone involved.

    70. I was there in the Mis 80’s spent over a yr there, cant say i remember much about it, as I was heavly medicated, However I do remember 1 specific girl Lanora Day, she was my lil side kick and I often threw the years wonder what have happin to her,and How she has been,I was there with few other name I remember, Lisa, Desiree,Keisha, Not sure f the exact yr, but maybe between the years of 85-87..My Name back then was Grace Burkholder( Lisa) Feel free to contact me if you remember me and wish to catch up, and specially if you are Lenora Day as I do still to this day wonder how she is and have come along.

    71. I was there in the early 90’s myself. Thru the power of the internet lots of people have reconnected. I give props to those who have turned their lives around despite the struggles we all went through. I’m searchin for a friendz of mines from back then and prayin they all well. Ive encounter folks who aint fully recovered from the demons that sent them there in the first place, and in denial of their roles in their lifes trials, and picked up some new problems in the process. I continue to pray for those who are troubled and pay it forwards in the youth ministry I do. If you’d like to talk about old essh, hit me up. I seen a lot in my years and my memory is good. I know some staff from my days at essh in real life now and I keep in touch with some friends, along with meetin some new ones. As-Salāmu `Alaykum.

    72. I was at ESSH from Sept. 92 until March 93. I had some good times there and some bad times. It helped me grow up.

    73. I was committed to ESSH in about 1982 and was only there for three months of hell.
      I don’t remember much, but more coming back, thanks to this page!
      They tried to “recommit” me, but thanks to God Almighty, I fought and won at 15 and was sent to a group home instead.
      I was kept so messed up on dope, I cant remember much.
      I do remember two girls, to. One’s name was January. The other, I don’t remember her name, but she was blind and mistreated, as far as I witnessed. I don’t remember how bad.
      And I spent a time in that “isolation” chamber in the burlap sack, on a plastic matress about 2 inches thick without a sheet or blanket (u mightve hung yourself on the flat, painted cynderblock wall!) and eating with a medicine cup!
      Contact me for more info if you remember me or like to chat.
      I’m “normal” now, or rather – I conform to societies rules and habits regarding good behavior:-)
      God bless…

    74. i am looking for any who was at essh who lives in or close to berks county pa. or who did live in berks county at one time . please get in toutch with me at tractorboy50@yahoo.com thank you.


      • Hi John, I have responded to your facebook request and look forward to discussing anything you would like in regards to ESSH. I live in Reading. I was in ESSH when I was 14, 15, and 16. 1993, 1994 and 1995. It was really hard for me to remember what years I was there. I was medicated then and my life was one giant roller coaster. I remember saving a girls life on Unit three. She tried to hang herself after a Valentines dance. In one of those wooden modular closet things that were attached to the bed. She used a bunch of shoelaces. Good thing I was so obsessive about how my things were or I would never had gone back to the room to make sure things were in order. I left right after there was a riot on unit three. I signed myself out as soon as I became voluntary. Well anyways, take care and I hope everyone who has visited has come to more peace in their life. Essh was hard, because no one likes to be locked in and told what to do, but I bet there were lots of other places that were ten times worse. Take Care

    76. does anybody have any information on how i can put sime pictures of essh on this site? over thye past year i have collected some information on essh and i would like to share it with the rest of the world. i also made a map of the cottages.

      • John,
        I maintain this blog, if you email pics to me of ESSH that includes descriptions of what is in the pics, I would be happy to post them for you. my blog email is …. pamhi @ verizon.net (remove the spaces around the @ sign)


    77. i am still working on the history of essh. i made a map of the 12 cottages and i think i know witch name goes with witch cottage. when i left essh in jan. 65 only 2 cottages were for girls were they ever more thean 2 cottages open at the same time fore girls? in what year did essh reach it.s top population?on june 30 64 they were about 90 of us . in jan. 13 65 we had abuot 150 of us .

    78. does any body know the email address for jenn c.
      jenn b. and wendy m. ? i live in northern berks countyry do any past essh people live near me? how are the 3 girles who started the essh facebook page goosd work!

      • I think you might be referring to me when you say “Jenn C” I’m up in northwestern PA My memory of when I was at ESSH is hazy at best but I think I was there around 1986 or 1987 I was only there for maybe 3 months and pretty much stayed to myself. the only staff I remember by name was Miss. Minnie but there is another staff member that I remember just not by name. She was a holocaust survivor. I remember she reminded me of my own Grandma in some ways and that being around her seemed to have a calming effect. She would talk history with me a little once in awhile and that made life easier for me while I was at ESSH.

        Otherwise there isn’t a lot of solid memories just some vague stuff.

        I can be contacted at …. “webtypo @ verizon.net” (just remove the spaces and quotes)

      • John,

        I passed on your message to Jenn & Wendy for you….

      • I was at Essh for a year and a half total. 1991-1994 I was surprised when shortly thereafter I heard it was to close. There were three womens cottages but I was in the main building. There was a huge riot when I was finally leaving in 94. Anyone here from around that time and living near Berks county would like to get in touch if at all possible.

        • Just in addition, I think I remember Angel from Unit 2 I was on Unit 3, Dr. Shah was my doc and Ms. Linda was my Counsler. I remember ms. Bonnie whom we all used to make fun of but she did take me home for Christmas one year which was pretty cool. Ms. Geri, she was the hairdresser and wow she was a no nonsense lady. I dated a Jason but I dont remember his name anymore. I loved going swimming and photography with those two goofy guys, we also made rockets out of balsa woood. Good times. I liked when we would go down to the little crick and look for garnets. My favorite times though would probably be ceramics. What I hated was how cold it got in the winter. I hated the fact we had no fitted sheets o.O. The rubber furniture sucked too. Oh well. I’m 33 now. I’ve gotten over most if not all of the issues that sent me to that place anyway. Carrie Nails

          • hey carrie was the jason u were talking about last name Menditto, Conklin or Fisher? I got there in 1994 and those are the jasons i remember.

          • What Angel u remember. Prob me? I was in the same unit with troy nupold

    79. i still have trouble

    80. hello my name is terry. I was at eastern state school and hospital from 88 to 91. I have been looking and want to thank whoever came up with this site. I was on Unit 4. The nurse on my unit was Diane I hated most of the staff although there was a staff member named Chet who i had visions of destroying that man! I remember people who were patients there. names like Carl, Angel, Teresa, I am so sad now because there were good patients there and I cant remember them I feel so sad about that…I remember a reverrand named rev. hunter. I remember working at the soda shop or canteen. I remember walking through the halls going to meals. I remember this isolation room and the floor covered with piss and shit and spit. I must stop writing as visions are becoming overwhelming.

      • hi my name is margaret seibert i was there with teresa webb and karen white. i use to date vincent wax u can face book me under margaret ryan or e-mail me @ peggyjo1976@yahoo.com

      • hi my name is margaret seibert aka peggy i lived there in 88- 89 maybe 90 i was friends with diego and theresa webb and wayne gravely and vincent wax and many more looking for all my old friends

        • I remember Diego! Would always come his hair back! He was on unit 4 with me. Our nurse was Nurse Diane!

          • I remember diego we ran after josh died then came back to get troy and some other peeps later thst night from the round building and jetted

    81. […] State Hospital Information « Pennsylvania Mental Health IssuesI am curious myself about a lot of information regarding eastern state school and hospital. I know personally about this place and what it became in the 90′ … […]

    82. I was a prisoner at ESSH from 7/15/1977 to 10/30/1979! I still remember the first 2 weeks in the intake unit like it was yesterday. Always poking and proding me with needles, cotton swabs on my anus every night! In the 27 1/2 months I spent at this hellhole, I saw a psyciatrist 3 times! I don’t know if they still let people smoke after I left, but I was part of the student counsel that helped let “Students” smoke 3 times a day. 1 in the AM, 1 in the PM (after dinner), and 1 at bedtime. I was always getting caught smoking at other times, and would be given a choice of 24 hours of room restriction, or 3 days cottage restriction. It wasn’t all bad, some of the staff were very nice and understanding. Although, more than 32 years later, I still have nightmares about trying to escape the place, and not being able to do so. I remember my roomate and I getting the key for the big heavy locked screens in our room, so we could open the windows to get air. We had a room with a partition (Half wall between 2 rooms) to the room next to ours, and we would leave the screen unlocked because the room was empty, and they never checked it. We would sneek out in the middle of the night, jump over the fence by route 1, and go to the George Washington Motor Lodge and buy cigarettes out of the machine for .65cents a pack. Other than feeling like someones science project, I had alot of fun there, but like Mel Gibson says in Braveheart, “FREEDOM!” I was in Andalusia & Ivyland cottages, and all I can really say is, any problems I had before, and while I was there, I outgrew on my own. What a waste of time and resourses! Contact me if you wish. Peace, Adam Hope.

    83. hey guys , wassup , i was in essh from 90 – 92 , had some good times there ,
      tracy is tht who i think u r . brian i think member u , u were with me and steve on unit 4 , angel black damn homi it s been so long we need to get together

    84. […] Pennsylvania Mental Health Issues Skip to content HomeAboutAcronymsAnti-StigmaContact MeDisclaimerOrganizationsNational OrganizationsPA OrganizationsState Hospital InformationState Hospital Closure LinksState Hospital HistoryTreatmentC/FSTPeer SpecialistsPsychiatric Advanced DirectivesRecovery ModelVoting ← Allentown State Hospital closure: Allentown State Hospital closure – mcall.com […]

    85. Hello Everyone! My name is Jenn and I am a 28 year old former patient of ESSH. I arrived there on July 19th 1994 and left in March of 95 and went to Hoffman Homes. They had placed me in Jamison Cottage.

      I am always looking for info on ESSH and still can not find any pictures of ESSH from back then. I will honestly say that I didn’t want to leave ESSH. Yes as to be expected it was stressful living in the environment I was, but to be honest there were alot of ESSH I liked.
      The Swimming Pool, The Canteen, The Round Building (got caught making out there a couple times with my ex), the dances, school yeah at the time I thought it was boring but then again I liked Photography class. I remember the talent shows, planting the bulbs, i loved their goolash. Man just thinking about it now.

      I remember occupational therapy with Ms Sara. I cant think of her name but there was a skinny blonde lady that did the dance stuff and the movie nights in the little side room of the round building.
      A couple of us girls from different units as well as some of the boys went off grounds to a stable and learned to right horses and also clean up after them. Then at the end of the amount of weeks we were in the horse program we had a big competition. Haha thanks to my ex Jason Fisher pulling a trick on me due to the horse I had being my horse couldnt run in the competition I got destracted and lost. I remember during the summer playing baseball with the mixed units. I still miss alot of the staff as well as the the good times I was there. Please if anyone has any info from around that time please pass it along. Also there is a group on Facebook for Eastern State School and Hospital if you would like to join. 2 of my cottage mates and I are the admins of it. Please come join so we can swap stories on there and such, I even have pics from when i was there posted up hahah including my ridiculous intake pic.
      Ok I guess i better get going. Haha I havent even been to bed yet and i ahve to be up at 7. Hope to hear from you guys soon.

      Mgibbs Id like to also say thank you to you for being there when I need someone to talk to. I wish it wasnt always something bad when we talk but I do appreciate you being there. Thank You

    86. Hello,
      I was in Eastern State. I was on Unit 2. I still keep in contact with some staff and also some former patients. Interested in keeping in touch with more. If you Remember Brian B. Unit 2. Please Email me at bbistherealme@yahoo.com
      Thank you

      • I was at Eastern from 1990-1992 and on Unit 1. I am interested in getting in touch with some friends from that time. The friendships I had then were like no other. Of course we all had our problems, but who didn’t. I felt people understood me.. and could relate to what I was coming from. If you were at ESSH at that time, feel free to contact me. I’d love to talk to you!

    87. I was in ESSH for 3 1/2 years, and discharged in 93. I was first in unit 4, then unit 2, and then eddington cottage. I would love to get in contact with some of the people from that time. Anyone want to talk about Eastern contact me at acaps2005@aol.com

    88. thanks mike i am trying to put a lot of info on this computer but i make a lot of mistakes and it is gone i just put a lot on for ycu made a mistake and it was gone .

    89. i was in croyden cottage from aug. 1964 to jan. 1965 i am looking for more information about the 12 cottages @essh only 5 were open when i left 2 for girls and 3 for boys.does anyone know the names of the cottages they were named A TO L TRACTORBOY50@YAHOO.COM thank you.

      • I sent you the list of cottages did get it yet?

        • tranks mike as of tue. nov.9 I DID NOT RECEIVE YOUR LIST OF the cottages. I WILL CHECK BACK AS soon as i can

          • (I sent this e-mail out on Nov. 1st, check your spam folder)
            Mr. John Miller,
            I read your request looking for the names of the cottages at ESSH, I can be lazy sometimes which is why I didn’t reply back earlier. I hope the following info helps, and by all means please forward any info you may have. If you have any pictures and can e-mail them to me I would be very greatful. I started a contact list keeping track of all ESSH people I run into, to start a network so to speak, I will let you know if I run into anybody who was there during your time. Anytime you wan to chat about ESSH feel free to drop me a line….I was there for 1 year 88-89……

            Cottages: Andalusia, Buckingham, Croyden, Durham, Eddington, Fallsington, grier, harrow, ivyland, jamison, Keith, Langhorne.
            The main building had 4 units; unit, 1, 2, 3, 4, when I was there, 1 & 3 were for girls, 2 & 4 for boys. The main building had a lockdown unit on the top floor (forensic unit)

            I hope that helps Mr. Miller….

            • I was on Unit One from September 1988 to February of 1989 just before my 18th birthday. I would LOVE to see pics of this hospital again though I am sure there aren’t any of the Units themselves. 😦 I have such bad memories of this hospital like being sent to bed at 8 pm just because my bedroom was a little messy or my bed wasn’t made right. They were such a-holes, tho some of the nurses there were nice like Miss Jackie and Miss Sue. ANYONE who has info can email me at Kristieannesmama@aol.com!

    90. i hope to learn more about computers. i have a lot of infomation about essh. i have a lot of quistions about essh. what were the names of the girls cottages? you can contact me at tractorboy50@yahoo.com.

    91. Thank you 🙂

    92. My great grandfather died in Torrance and I was looking to get more information on him. I know very little about him, my grandfather would never talk about him, the only thing he ever said was after his father was commited he went to see him once and would never go back because of all of the stuff that he saw while he was visiting him. I was wondering if there is a place that still has patients records, I would love to read his record and see what went on with him. I have search many places on the internet but I am havent come up with much. If anyone has any information on this please get back to me! Thanks

      • I don’t know anything about how to get records myself, but I do know that I spotted a discission about getting records on another site called, “Kirkbirde Buildings” pretty much it is a sitefor folks who are “fans” (for lack of a better description) of buildings that had been built using Thomas Story Kirkbride’s design, but they do go into other topics that include research kinds of things. It is a free forum, and I’ve been fascinated with what I’m learning through it myself. If you look at the froums, the topic appears about halfway down the screen and is titled “Patient Records”

        Here’s the address for the site if you want to take a look at it …


    93. to jenca
      i have a picter of essh! i have a lot of info on essh i was treir in 64/65
      please contact me!

    94. hi my name is melissa. i was at essh in the late 80S about 1987 1988. i was on unit 3 and im looking to fine anyone who might know me. i remember a few names ella rupert,scott fike,dennis,michelle,janet ,beth simpson thats all i can remember. please contact me!

      • hello melissa, i was also at essh in the 1980’s but the earlier part of the 1980’s. there was a melissa there as well. i was on unit one for eight months and served the rest of my time in keith cottage. i was wondering if you might be the same melissa from when i was there? well feel free to leave me a message at sirpanhandle@yahoo.com if you would like. PS yes there was a beth there as well but i dont seem to quite remember her last name

      • i too was in there around that time on unit 7 and then i went to fallsington cottage, i have been trying to find someone named Kim Barksdale, i dont know if you can help.

        • Niocolas,

          I was there at that time and don’t recall any unit 7, but I was Fallsington though. Shoot me an e-mail so we can touch base (essh.gibbs@gmail.com) I’m looking for a few people as well…..

      • Melissa.. I hope it’s u.. My name is Jeannie. I’m a short Spanish girl. I remember u so vividly dancing to the beach boys kokomo..Lol..I considered u n Ella one of my very few friends. If u remember me please respond

    95. Iam trying to put more inforaction on line about ESSH but i am not good at computers.

    96. looking for anyone who might have worked in the old torrance state hospital

    97. mistake! ilast went to essh in feb. 1966 it had adairy farm the mall was built were the farm was the mall was open in 1968 in 1964–1965 they were corn fields at each end of the property were the essh buildings were.

    98. the picture of essh is no longer on the internet ido have photocopies of the picture but only in b/e by the time iwent back on the internet to copy it in color it was no longer on the internet the school and rec building were double in size since ileft essh on jan. 19 1965 i did go back for treatment after iwent home untill feb. 1965 any infonation on the history of essh would be helf full.

    99. essh was closed in june 1996 it was sold to o,neill properties in 1997 the main building was rebuilt as a office building all the rest was smashed more new buildings are being build i found on the internet a picture of essh when it was still a school! the cottages were not placed were i thought they were i have a list of the names of the cottages but i don,t know what name went with what cottage can any body help me? were all the cottages used on june29 1964 when i came to essh one cottage was open for boyes I AM NOT SHURE OF the name it was st the low end of the property 4 more cottages were open up fron july to nov. 1964 I MOVED into cryden on aug. 17 1964 the picture shows 2 sets of 4 cottages each and 2 sets of 2 cottages each they were placed like a maize iwould any information obout the cottages and their names ialso found a school newspaper from nov. 1964! i allso found my notes of my days at essh!

    100. i was there at eastern state in 1991, i guess just before it closed down and yes it was pretty bad.i was 14 and from that place i have learned a difficult life it never helped. i dont even remember ever seeing a doctor and when my family found out that i was there i was discharged….crazy a child lost in the wind and no one even bothered to look for me or try and find my family,except for a lady named celeste that worked there. atleast she helped me out of that god forsaken place…

      • mgibbs521 ido not have acomputer at home i use the computer at the libaries I am learning computers I do not know alot abuut computers Iknow what is on the ESSH property today if you google 3740 lincoln highway trevose pa. 19049 you will get a picture of what was ESSH looks like today did you find all the information about ESSH on the internet? i am finding a lot .

      • Hi Everyone!
        I have been looking for people from ESSH for so long… it’s great to have stumbled upon this site here. I was in ESSH around 1993-1994… can’t remember exact dates. I was on Unit 1, I believe.. If you are standing looking at the front of the main building it was on the second floor on the left side. I remember the people and some of the times I had in that place like it was yesterday, but remember the specific details of stuff is always difficult.
        I was good hearted mostly, but a troublemaker at times. I’m the girl who, with the help of another girl, who lit a decent sized fire in the back hallway of our unit. It’s strange looking back on it, but the whole fire was set really only to cover up the smell of our cigarettes so we could get away with smoking. All the medications and treatments really had our heads in the clouds!
        Most of that place still haunts me…being tackled by people twice my size and restrained. Running away a zillion times only to be caught shortly thereafter. Dr. Shah- the psychiatrist who didn’t understand me one bit until over a year after I was admitted. Miss Linda- the psychologist who sided anywhere but with me. Then there are the good memories… my friends there… each and every one of them I have great memories of…. Andrea, Tara, Debbie, Laurel, Jessie, so many others…and Danielle, my best friend and co-conspirator… I’ve been trying to track her down ever since!
        Miss Jo was the one staff that really inspired me to transform my life into something better. To this day, I still think about her and wish somehow I could thank her for all she did to help me.
        If anyone wants to get in touch, email me anytime at mitchell.stephanie@msn.com.
        Much love to you all!

    101. my e-mail is tractorboy50@yahoo.com please get back to me

    102. Mr. John Miller, I read your reply however I am unable to e-mail you because of an incomplete e-mail address. My address is: essh.gibbs@gmail.com

    103. when ileft ESSH on jan.19 1965 they were 5 cottages open all were at the lower end of the property michael gibbs are you paitient#521? iwas paitient#97 we did not have many of the things you had no swiming pool no sodia shop we aii eat in the cottage family style in the cottage it was a boarding school not a nut house,like the rest of the place was . i was first in unit 2nw after 7 weeks i was first to go to a new cottage crydon cottage witch was cottage# 4 to be open iloved it! better thean pubic school .the unit was full of bad of bad kids would any boddy who knows any thing about ESSH from it,s start in sept. 1963 to it,s end in dec. 1996 please contact me at tractorboy50.com i would love to learn more about the changes that happen to essh after i left

    104. i was at essh in 64and65 contact me if you know any thing about essh

    105. Anybody who was at ESSH back in 88/89 please contact me at (essh.gibbs@gmail.com) I’m trrying to get in touch with some old friends there. Even if you were a resident before or after that time and you want to chat about it feel free to contact me. I also started a blog (http://www.easternstateschoolhospital.blogspot.com/) about my time at ESSH to help jog people’s memories. The blog is new as of 4/10, so bear with me until I update it with more memories.

    106. I have been trying to find 2 women who were friends of mine back at eastern state school and hospital. I was there back in 88-89 we made up the M&M&M’s. anyone who comes across gals with names of mickey o. or mindy w. please send them my way, thanks! also if anyone wants to discuss that place my memories are still vivid.

      • Michelle,

        I think I might know you! I was at ESSH during that time as well. I was in Durham for a little while but moved to Fallsington. I don’t recall a lot of people but do remember a few! I was dating Janet G. (unit 3), layla was a very good friend of mine as well as Joy. Get back to me so we can chat! (essh.gibbs@gmail.com)


      • I am not one of the M’s but I was also there in 1988, and discharged in Feb. of 1989 because I was turning 18. I don’t remember much about it, but I do have a diary that I had kept while I was there. I remember they wanted your room SPOTLESS and I got countless “early bedtime”s (8:00 pm) because of it. I got so many that I ended up going to bed at 8:00 pm every night anyhow, forced to or not. I remember the Day Room and how they had PB&J and milk…and how mean the staff was to me when I had scratched my arm up (intentionally) and I know I deserved to be watched, but they were just cruel to me all the time I had my mattress out in the hallway right by the Nurses’ Station. I remember having to go to school every day (learned NOTHING) and having to go to Church every Sunday (HATED it) and how they let us go to the Round Building for Rec time. You can email me and I will come up with some of the Staff names to prove that I really was there.

        Cheers and happy hunting. 🙂
        Laura G.
        Scranton PA

      • hi my name is melissa. i was there at essh at that same tme and same unit.unit 3. i think i know who u are. i also remember the name janet,ella rupert,beth simpson…do they ring a bell?

      • hi michelle i feel like i know u. were u on unit 3? i remember names like scott fike, ella rupert, denis,beth simpson. do any ring a bell?

    107. With the help of Dave from paghosthunters.org , i was able to get some of my questions answered. I do believe everything he told me, as there were thing he could not have known. As far as getting info from the hospital, someone else contacted me from a forum, because of her grandmother. She tried to get info. All they will tell you is the date of admission and release(or death). Anything else you need a dr. or a court order.I did take a ride out to visit the place. A security guard came and asked why I was there, and i just told him my grandmother diedt there in 1965 and i just wanted to come back one more time. He was fine with it, and talked a while. I didn’t ask to go inside, but I’d like to. If you find anything out , let me know.

      • I would be very interested in finding out how you recieved the answers you needed. My grandmother died at torrance. I gre up thinking that my grandmother had died while in childbirth and had no idea she died in torrance in 72. Her death certificate says she had psychosis and died from a thrombosis. My family is ridilled with mental issues and i need to know if all this is genetic . How can i get some help? Thanks kathleen

        • you can ask your dr. to write a leeter requesting all medical info on your grandmother and then contact torrance about how to request the info officially. I did this and they sent me all my grandmothers info.

      • can u please send me the info on where to find this info that u have found

    108. Hi Linda, Did you ever find out anything? My grandfather died in the and my mother would like to know anything Thank you.

    109. want to find info on a patient in Old Torrance State Hospital.Any ideas how to do this. Want answers about death of patient.

    110. I was at Eastern State School and hospital in 1985. Coming from North East Pa it was difficult with the culture shock. Some of the staff were excellent. We had a priest in training there that tried molesting some kids. Myself included. The actual priest that was the everyday priest that worked there was a good guy although he talked me out of filing charges because it would bring bad publicity to me. I trusted him but think it was to protect them more than it was to protect me. Ms Dee was a very good teacher. There was some of the staff that were abusive but for the most part there was some great staff that really believed in the work they were doing no matter how misguided the directions were. A student got out of line they could plan on getting a shot of thorzine. It was probably the most tramatizing time of my life.

      • Hi I know this is kind of an old webiste but i get bored and start looking stuff up. I was there around the same time you were. I was wondering if we might know each other.

    111. I was there in the 70s because my step father was very mean to me so my mom thought it was the most beneficial was to defend me yeah! Correctly. What year were your friend there and a name if you do not mind.
      Addiction Recovery New York

    112. I am curious myself about a lot of information regarding eastern state school and hospital. I know personally about this place and what it became in the 90′;s before it shut down. I’m wondering about other people’s experiences. Would anyone care to share??

    113. Yes, I know about the place I was there for a short time myself and it was so bad i ran away from there 2 times once with a boy i knew there. I still wonder what all happen to alot of people i knew there. I was there in the 70s because my step father was very mean to me so my mom thought it was the best was to protect me yeah! right. What year was your friend there and a name if you dont mind.I stll to this day remember names of staff there and god help them if i ever found them.purpleroseangel3@aol.com contact me please

    114. I am trying to find information on Allentown Mental Institution when they had a children’s unit.

      I know someone who spent about a year there and went through some heavy duty abuse by staff and other patients. He was just nine years old when he lived there. Who commits a nine year old with no mental health history to speak of?

      Some of the incidents he remembers are horrific, at best. Do you know of any public inquests? The Allentown site itself states that they closed down the section because it became “less crucial.” I suspect otherwise.

      My friend has had a hard time coming to terms with what happened to him there. I was just wondering if there was any history of lawsuits or public inquests that you know of. I have attached my email and any information you could give me would be greatly appreciated.

      Thank you.

      • i was there for about 2 years 1st yr durham second main jfu unit, i was hurt by two staff members,so i beat them down real bad i had state police there if you were there in 89-91 you would remember this,i held them until they confessed,in the day room,i was sent to the jfu for this

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